Prof. Dr. Matthew Shawkey, Ghent University – 9 October 2019

A light in the black: Mechanisms and evolution of melanin-based structural colors


The ubiquitous pigment melanin strongly absorbs light and thus produces many of the familiar black, brown and grey colors observed in nature. Paradoxically, it is also involved in the production of some of nature’s brightest colors such as the brilliant iridescent gorgets of hummingbirds. I will review what is known about melanin’s optical properties and how these can produce diverse structural colors both in nature and in the lab.​

Nature of Life seminars

Date       :   9 October 2019

Time       :   15.45 hours

Location:   Room WN-F647, W&N building VU Amsterdam